Our International Community: Phillipa Van Helden

Tell us all about you and what you’re working on right now.

Since April 2021, I’ve been the development coordinator at the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Australia’s leading Baroque and early music orchestra. My role involves looking after a portfolio of donors, coordinating our corporate partnerships, and organising our key fundraising events.

After so many cancelled concerts in 2021 due to lockdowns, it’s great to finally be back in concert halls in Sydney and Melbourne. We’re in the middle of a concert series at the moment, so it’s lovely to be able to meet up with donors at the concerts.

How did you discover CLOCK?

In 2020, I applied for and got accepted into a Women in Music mentoring program run by the Australian Independent Record Labels Association (AIR). In addition to being matched with a mentor who aligned with my career interests and goals, the program provided numerous other professional development opportunities, including CLOCK.

How has completing CLOCK helped you either professionally or personally?

I found the process of thinking of examples of how I had fulfilled the CLOCK competencies and skillsets really challenging particularly the creative practice skillset. Working in the arts administration and management space, it was easy to overlook the creative elements of the work I have done. Working to shift this thinking to acknowledge my creativity was and continues to be powerful.

CLOCK also helped me advocate for myself and communicate the value of my skills and experiences. It is a skill in itself to succinctly encapsulate the essence of previous projects I have been part of and what my roles entailed, and to do so proudly and confidently!

What has been the impact on your career as a whole?

I’d say the key impact has been how my confidence in my skills has developed and my pride in what I can contribute to my team at the Brandenburg.

What’s next for you?

I’m happy in my current role and still have a lot to learn, so I plan to stay for a while yet. It takes time to develop and nurture relationships with donors and corporate partners and organising fundraising events from inception to fruition (especially during Covid). I want to stick around and see these grow.

I doubt I will continue working in development forever, but I know that when I decide to move in a different direction, I will better be able to define the skills I acquired in this field, thanks to CLOCK!


Author Liz Appleby


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